President Michel Aoun on Monday arrived in Moscow on an official visit, the National News Agency said.
The president was received at the airport by the Russian president’s Mideast envoy and Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov, the Russian foreign ministry’s head of protocol, and Russian Ambassador to Lebanon Alexander Zasypkin.
Also present at the airport were Lebanese Ambassador to Russia Shawki Bou Nassar, ex-MP Amal Abu Zeid, Lebanese military attache in Moscow Brig. Gen. Khodr Hammoud and the Greek Orthodox Church Representative at the Patriarchate of Moscow and the Whole of Russia, Archbishop Nivon Saikali.
The president is accompanied by Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil and senior presidential adviser Mireille Aoun-Hachem while Lebanese Ambassador Bou Nassar is supposed to join the delegation in Moscow.
Aoun is scheduled to meet with President Vladimir Putin and other senior Russian officials.
Talks are expected to tackle bilateral relations, the developments in the Middle East and efforts to find a solution for the Syrian refugee file.
Aoun will also meet a group of Russian businessmen on Monday afternoon after which he will hold talks with Hilarion of Volokolamsk, the chairman of the Department of External Church Relations at the Patriarchate of Moscow, in the presence of Archbishop Saikali.
In the evening, he will meet Lebanese expatriates in Russia at a ceremony thrown in his honor by Ambassador Bou Nassar.
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